I want to be healthy. Not a physical goal or fantasy but a desire to be free. To be able to instill good habits into my children. To be able to say with confidence that my fat suit has been shed no matter what size I am in. That I have struggled and flailed and failed but that I am walking in victory and grace.
I am a quitter. In the worst sense of the word. Sometimes it’s as if I have the attention span of an overstimulated toddler. There is always something new and shiny to play with and nothing ever comes to fruition because I quit before it is finished.
I believe that this time it will work. It hasn’t, as evidenced by the treadmill, the spin bike, the jogging stroller, the calorie monitor, the bike trailer, the millions of exercise videos, the blender, mixer, diet books, gym memberships, pots of cabbage soup, shakes, subscriptions to meal plans and any other shiny things that somehow convinced me that this was the key to my success.
I begin the list with the pros and cons. If there are enough pros and emotional excitement (shininess) , I forge ahead with determination. Cabbage soup for 30 days while losing 40 lbs. Sounds good till day 3 and more gas than any normal human should be capable of making.
Somewhere between the base camp and the trek up the mountain, I lose steam. I look to the summit, the distant far off place where I would plant my flag and it’s altogether too far. The incline and terrain are too brutal. The days too long and cold.
I start to wonder why I ever wanted to climb this stupid mountain in the first place.
After all, lots of people are perfectly content to stay below. They probably have enchiladas below and comfy beds and WiFi. Either way, this mountain climbing business is not for me.
And then, I quit, but instead of trekking back down the mountain, I sled down, gaining speed and crashing at the bottom with 20 extra pounds over my starting point and a bunch of uneaten Jenny Craig meals in the freezer.
Apparently, I’m more of a small hill kind of girl than a big mountain. Or maybe I’m a plateau girl. That’s even better. A bit steep at first but then it all levels out and you still have a decent view without the nosebleeds and altitude sickness.
Maybe the quitting is inevitable because I am attempting to climb Everest when I should really be looking for a nice hill with a paved trail.
Maybe it’s not so much in the revamping of all that is wrong but in the consistency of the steps I am taking.
Maybe my quitting is actually the right thing for me, because I’m always going about it all wrong.
Maybe the constant attempts to ascend the mountain unprepared have just left me increasingly weaker and more traumatized.
Maybe the view from the hill is good enough for now.
Maybe, I need to stop hating the process, stop hating the failures I feel and start embracing the journey. Step up into grace and take in the view from the plateau. Allow myself to notice the things that I can see from here and focus on those.
Everest can wait. I quit.
Do you have any mountains to quit? Hills to rest on? I’d love to hear your thoughts.